Jason Bateman has experience being around creeps. As Arrested Development’s Michael Bluth, his brothers included a magician named GOB, a hook-handed man-child, and a card-carrying analrapist. But not even that could prepare Bateman for Joel Edgarton’s Gordo in their upcoming film The Gift.
The trailer for The Gift trots out well-worn “creepy acquaintance who knows a little too much about your past” tropes from movies like Single White Female, Fatal Attraction, Pacific Heights, Cape Fear, and maybe even (but hopefully not) a touch of Chuck And Buck. Instead of going through the regular blow-by-blow of the trailer’s scenes, The A.V. Club would like to offer some life advice, hopefully mitigating the type of torment experienced by Bateman’s Simon and his wife, played by Rebecca Hall.
- If you commit a grievous sin in your past, and only one other guy knows about it, just up the ante and add that witness to your body count.
- If you value privacy, don’t buy a mid-century modern home featuring floor-to-ceiling windows.
- If you bump into an old acquaintance who introduces himself as Gordon, only to immediately correct himself that it’s actually “Gordo”—run, don’t walk, to the nearest exit.
- If you’re going to have pets, skip the ornamental fish and Bernese mountain dog. Invest your money in something less vulnerable, like a cobra pit.
- If you host a dinner party, don’t bore guests by talking about your creepy new friend. Chances are he’s skulking around outside in the dark, listening to every word. Besides, it just sounds like you’re humblebragging.
- If your new friend starts hanging out with your wife, it’s time to come clean about your “little secret.” She’s going to find out what you did eventually. A marriage is built on trust, and who knows, maybe she’ll even help you stuff his body in the trunk.
The Gift will arrive affably enough, forcing its awkward friendship upon you only to later reveal its sinister ulterior motives, when it hits theaters on July 31.